Youth Camp Overview

Overview

How many of us wonder if we could have been really great at some type of craft or skill, given an earlier start? Sherwood Forest Summer Camp attendees have the rare opportunity to try their hands at many crafts and skills that are no longer widely taught. Maybe your child is a natural with a bow? Or perhaps they are made for the stage, but never had a chance to be in a play before. It is amazing what new things a child can learn when you take away the distractions of modern technology and put them in a room with a skilled teacher.

All of our hands-on activities take place in our 23-acre medieval village. Campers will be transported back in time to a world of knights, ladies, and a simpler way of life. Campers will work with their hands to create useful tools and learn skills that were essential to daily living in the Renaissance. No modern entertainment devices will be available. Every member of our team, whether a paid staff member or a volunteer, undergoes a strict screening and application process, and is required to participate in First Aid and CPR training. Our nurse is on site 24/7 and our pool is monitored closely by a certifed lifeguard. Meals are prepared by food industry professionals. We are fully state certified.


Curriculum

“Green” campers, who have never attended our camp, will follow the Path of the Scholar where they learn a bit of everything, experiencing 10-12 classes twice per week. All Sea Dragons (age 7-9) will follow the Path of the Scholar as well.

“Veteran” campers, which are those who have already attended at least one week of Sherwood Forest Summer Camp, can continue following the Path of the Scholar, or if they are age 10+ they can choose the specialist path offered during their session as an alternative. Specialist paths offer campers who may not wish to repeat the Scholar path the opportunity to delve more deeply into that week’s subject matter. They will receive intensive instruction, attending each class that is part of that week’s specialist path 4-5 times.

New campers attending multiple weeks must follow the Path of the Scholar their first week and then may choose either to continue as a Scholar or to specialize for subsequent week(s). The choice must be made at time of booking. If, after the first week ends they wish to alter their choice, we will allow this if space is available.

Specialist Paths

The following classes are an estimation of what we are planning to offer, but we reserve the right to make substitutions if necessary.

Path of the Bard

Session I: Jul 5-11

Path of the Hero

Session II: Jul 12-18

Path of the Forester

Session III: Jul 19-25

Theatre
Music
Costuming
Juggling
Magic
Swordplay
Crossbow
Spear Throwing
Leatherwork
Chivalry
Falconry
Archery (longbow)
Fletching
Survivalism
Blacksmithing

 

Visit our Curriculum page for examples of classes we have offered in the past.   Most of these will be available in 2015, but a few may be swapped out to keep things fresh.

Sword PlayFalconryBlacksmithingArchery

Accommodations

Campers have the option of sleeping in Sherwood Castle or in one of the Merry Folks’ Pavilions.

Sherwood Castle is an indoor, climate controlled environment. A temporary wall separates boys from girls. The capacity of Sherwood Castle is 70 campers per week.

The Merry Men’s Pavilion and Merry Women’s Pavilion are large tents which stand over a raised wooden platform. Our more adventurous campers will enjoy this option because, although it is a bit more luxurious than traditional camping, campers still get to be closer to nature and enjoy the night air and the sound of crickets and denizens of the forest. In the past we have found attempts at air conditioning the Pavilions ineffective, but fans are very effective, so comfort will be ensured with their use. Campers choosing this accommodation option will have more personal space to spread out in than those sleeping in the Castle. The capacity of each Pavilion is approximately 25 campers.

We are well aware that most kids will choose the Castle option due to the air conditioning. For this reason, we are offering a couple of fun perks to those who choose the Pavilion option:

  • First showers at night (if you think this is unimportant, ask a former camper how they feel about it!)
  • Nightly readings of chapters from the Robin Hood book with an actual Sherwood Forest Faire cast member
  • First choice of Friday elective classes

Accommodations options are first-come, first-served.

Schedule

Overall

In 2015 we will have 3 sessions of 6 nights each (drop off Sunday, pick up Saturday).  If campers are attending multiple sessions consecutively, they can stay with us on that “bridge” Saturday night and enjoy extra-special activities at no extra charge!  (We’ll do their laundry for no additional charge, too)

  • Session I  – Jul 5-11
  • Session II – Jul 12-18
  • Session III – Jul 19-25

Now, with some details…

Most days, campers will wake and eat breakfast by 8:00am and go to bed by 10:00pm. During their 14 hour day they will attend four to five classes, and will have fun participating in group activities. Each day they will enjoy 3 healthy, delicious meals, several healthy snacks, have time to cool off in the pool, have a nap if desired, and will shower before bed.

The week begins Sunday afternoon when campers are dropped off.  Activities for the rest of the day are focused on orientation and everyone getting to know each other.

Monday through Thursday, campers go to all of their classes with their clans and have a fun evening activity at night

Fridays are all elective, so campers can revisit the classes they liked the most for additional instruction

Saturday morning, campers perform the play they have been working on in Theatre class for their parents, and most go home

From departure time Saturday until Sunday arrival time the next day, “Bridge kids” who are with us multiple weeks will get to have special instruction and enjoy some unstructured time, always under adult supervision of course, before the new week begins.

Meals

We offer a healthy, kid friendly menu with options to satisfy even the pickiest eaters.   Our catering is performed by Como Ristorante Italiano, which has a solid history serving patrons at Sherwood Forest Faire since its inception (2010) and also Summer Camp kiddos since its inception (2012).  The food industry professionals at Como’s can accommodate any dietary restrictions.

Tuition

Tuition per child per week: $795.  Your $150 deposit is due with the camper’s application, and the balance is due by May 31st.

Discounts

$50 discount for each of the following:

  • paying tuition in full and completing all preliminary paperwork by December 31 (Note: there is a reduced discount of $25 for doing so by March 31st, if you miss the first deadline)
  • each sibling after the first, if attending together
  • each week after the first, if a camper attends consecutive weeks

Discounts are cumulative, so you can qualify for more than one of the above discounts.

Capacity

  • We will accept a maximum of 120 campers per session: 20 in the 7-9 age bracket, 50 age 10-12 and 50 age 13-15
  • Of those a maximum of 70 will be assigned to sleep in the Great Hall and 25 in each of the Pavilions

Checking Availability & Making a Payment

  • The easiest way to check availability for your camper is to visit the reservation website and attempt to purchase a Tuition Deposit for the session you want.  If you are able to select the week and age bracket that is appropriate for your camper, then we have room.  If we are full for that week and age bracket then you will not be able to purchase it
  • There isn’t currently a way to check availability on accommodations or curriculum spots.  If something fills up then we will post a note at the top of this page to let you know
  • If you are unable to check the website, email admissions@sherwoodforestsummercamp.com and we will check availability for you

Making a Reservation

When you are ready to book, download the Camper Application, which includes instructions – > 2015 Camper Application

Refund Requests & Cancellations

  • If your camper decides not to attend because we cannot honor their curriculum or accommodations preference, then you are eligible for a full refund of your deposit regardless of the application date
  • In cases where you have booked a spot but have to cancel for any other reason, up to May 31 you may receive a full refund. Starting June 1st, no refunds will be given but your payment can be applied to a future year

Want to Know More?

  • Join our Facebook page to see photos and updates about camp
  • View our Flickr  page if you don’t like Facebook; it has all our photos too!
  • See what other parents have said about Sherwood Forest Summer Camp on our Testimonials page
  • Contact us with questions or to request our References document (a few parents and campers who have agreed to speak to prospective families).

FAQs

  • How can I know all the exciting things my camper is up to while they are at Sherwood Forest Summer Camp?
    • Join our Facebook page and watch for live posts about what is going on in our village.  We also post photos here every 1-2 days.
    • Those who prefer not to use Facebook can bookmark our Flickr page, where you can see our photos without having to create an account.  Flickr is updated every 1-2 days.
    • Watch for emailed accounts of what the kids have been up to.  They won’t include specific names of campers, because they are being sent out to all families, but they will give you an idea of how much fun they are having!  These will be sent out to all parents during the session their camper is attending.
    • Make sure your camper is prepared to write to you!  We have a Mail Day set each Wednesday, but they can write to you at any time and we will post it for them.
  • When are payments due?
    • Your $150 deposit is due with the camper’s application, and the balance is due by May 31.
  • Can I make partial payments?
    • Yes.  To do this you must pay by check and mail to our PO Box.  The address is Sherwood Forest Summer Camp, PO Box 10816, Houston TX 77206.  Payments must still be completed by May 31.
  • Are there any scholarships?
    • Not yet.  But this is something we really want to do in the near future.
  • Can I speak to my camper on the phone while they are at Camp?
    • For the sake of preserving the illusion of our being in a medieval village to the maximum extent possible, our preference is to avoid phone communications from home except in the event of an emergency.  Calls like this contribute to homesickness, and if dozens of campers are being pulled out of class each day to chat for “just one minute,” imagine how disruptive that would be!
    • You can expect that should anything require your attention we will address it with you immediately
    • If you are worried and want to check how things are going with your camper, feel free to email or call our main number. We can check with your camper’s counselor to get a firsthand report of how they are doing
  • How do you deal with homesickness?
    • We have found that homesickness is something worried about by parents far more than actually occurs.  When we do have a homesick camper, we divert them from that train of thought with fun activities.  Campers are kept so busy that they rarely have time to be sad about being away from home.  Our experience has been that after that first night, even those rare cases of homesickness tend to go away.
  • If my camper is staying multiple weeks, do they need to pack for multiple weeks?
    • Campers who are staying multiple weeks will have their laundry done free of charge on weekends.
  • Can I provide a care package for my camper?
    • Yes!  Our suggestion is that you secretly prepare it before camp begins, and surreptitiously drop it off when you are registering your camper.  We will deliver it to your camper on Wednesday.  Please do not include any food in the care package, or your camper will likely end up with critters in their sleeping quarters!

 

 

In Falconry Class with Master Kevin, campers learn the basics of how to tie falconers’ knots, they learn about various birds’ habits and requirements, and if they exhibit appropriate caution and patience they even get to hold a falcon! On the day shown, campers are learning how to make a Treasure Candle. They select items such as semi-precious stones and trinkets to place at various places in their candle as it cools; these items will then be rediscovered as the candle burns. Master Braider Andrea teaches basic techniques to campers who are new to braiding, and challenges any who possess a modicum of experience with advanced lessons.
Campers collaborate to put together a performance for their parents on their departure day. They work hard at rehearsal, often focusing on techniques such as projection and self-immersion. In Herb Lore with Uilliam MacArtuir, campers roam the village and stop to learn the properties of various plants, especially the ones that are dangerous. Here and there they even have an opportunity to taste edibles. Blacksmithing with Master Tiger and Mistress Erin is not for the faint of heart! Utmost care is taken to train campers in safety measures before they are allowed to strike red-hot iron and form it into useful objects.
Each evening after dinner Campers engage in a special activity. Pictured here is a Poi lesson given by Master Thom Thumb. In Pottery with Master Steward, campers learn how to form and decorate a clay mug which they can then utilize at the glorious feast on their final night. In Music class with Master Roy, campers learn the basics of rhythm and listening to each other, as well as learning to be less self-conscious in front of each other.

2014 Summer Camp Closing Performance

Session One

Session Two

Session Three